The Forgiveness Factor (Part 1)

The Forgiveness Factor

In Times Like These

We live in a time when the “Us Against Them” philosophy is prevalent and growing. Whether it’s one yelling “Yes we can” to another screaming, “Make America great again!” Or whether one is for or against abortion, round or flat earth, climate change, black or blue lives matter, pro-vax vs. anti-vax, or democrat vs. republican. If you can name it, people will be at each other’s throats about it. This contentiousness is not just a difference of opinion; there is an overwhelming intolerance and hatred for any ideas foreign to our own. Many of our political leaders hold grudges and refuse to work together on common goals that will ultimately help the country.

Most importantly, for our purposes here, believers reject each other for differences in belief or for others’ weaknesses and shortcomings. Instead of being prayerful and remorseful for the failures of our brothers and sisters, we deem them unworthy of our Savior’s grace, love, acceptance, and forgiveness. This attitude is not only prevalent with believers, but there is also a distinct lack of compassion, understanding, and tolerance toward anything or anyone not like ourselves.

A Lesson from the Osama Bin Laden Situation

The night the US military forces caught and killed Osama Bin Laden, Abba taught me a valuable lesson about how He sees all people. When the local news announced what happened, I began to dance around singing the Wicked Witch song from the original Wizard of Oz musical. “Ding dong, the witch is dead! Which old witch? The wicked witch!” In the aftermath of his killing, thousands gathered around the US Capitol building, cheering and celebrating. I considered driving down there since I didn’t live far.

As I continued celebrating, the Breath of Truth tugged at my heart and said, “What are you doing?” I began to feel convicted right away. “I’m celebrating the demise of an evil man.” I retorted slowly, realizing that Abba was not pleased. He responded, “Do you think that’s what I want?” My shoulders dropped, “No?” I answered meekly. Then I began to understand that while his death kept him from killing any more people, celebrating it was unacceptable for a believer in Yeshua to do.

Later, He showed me the verse in Ezekiel 33: 11 – 12“As surely as I live, declares Adonai YAHWEH, I take no pleasure in the death of the wicked, but rather that the wicked should turn from their wicked ways and live. Turn! Turn from your evil ways! For why should you die, oh house of Israel?”

Bin Laden had, as many believe, masterminded the most significant attack on US soil, and many in America wanted vengeance, not just justice. But those of us who love and serve the Almighty are taught to live by different standards. We are not allowed to hold grudges or seek revenge. Nor are we encouraged to harbor resentment and secret wishes for the demise of our enemies. The bottom line is that every individual, no matter what they’ve done, is loved by our Father and is a candidate for repentance and forgiveness. And we, as His ambassadors, should remain neutral by putting ourselves in a position to minister the gospel to them no matter who they are or what they have done. We cannot do that if we are at odds with them because of something they’ve done to offend us or if they have a different and opposing opinion than us. 

What if?

What if we were on vacation and while lying on the beach, the Holy Breath told us to get up and go to a building where an active serial killer was hiding to give him a specific message from Him? What if he received the Word and repented? Or what if our Father led us to mass murderers while they were still active to give them the message of salvation, redemption, forgiveness, and deliverance? Are we willing to lay aside our offenses and fears to save their eternal lives, even though they are actively taking lives? The world will tell us to take a gun or call the police on them, which is understandable, but how our Father does things is not how the world does things. 

There is an example of this very thing in scripture. Paul, while his name was still Saul, had conspired with other religious leaders in Israel to commit premeditated, cold-blooded first-degree murder on those called Christians back then. He was actively hunting down men, women, and children to have them stoned to death for their beliefs. See Acts 7: 54- 8: 3. During this time, Yeshua appeared to him and took his sight so that Paul would see the error of his ways. He then told Ananias to go to him to help him restore his physical sight after Yeshua opened his spiritual eyes. See Acts 9: 10-19. Our Savior called Paul, forgave him, and changed his heart so much that he wrote the majority of the Renewed Testament of the Bible. He had one of His trusted servants Ananias, go to talk to him even though he could have ended up being one of his targets. What Yeshua did then, He wants to do today.

Our Forgiveness, Serious Business

Forgiveness is a necessary, integral part of a believer’s life. We cannot live a victorious life without it. Our sin separates us from the life of Elohim and restarts the process of death in our lives. But as the Apostle John told us in 1 John 1: 9, “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” Our asking for cleansing and forgiveness should be daily habits. Just as dirt builds up on our bodies daily, sin accumulates in our spiritual lives. If we do not wash our bodies regularly, we will begin to have an odorous stench. And if we are not forgiven and cleansed from sin daily, we will also start to give off a spiritual odor. Through His forgiveness, we are injected with His Life. That life reverses the death brought into our lives by sin. Only with the supernatural Life of Yahweh can we overcome the natural and supernatural obstacles that arise due to disobedience, transgression, and sin.

Our Forgiveness Links us to God’s Forgiveness

The forgiveness we give to others links us directly to the forgiveness we receive from our Heavenly Father. While being forgiven of our sins is a beautiful gift from our Father, it is only one side of the coin. One side represents Abba’s glorious forgiveness to us; the other side, however, represents our forgiveness of others. Both sides must operate in our lives for the coin of salvation and restoration to work. When we stand at the gate of heaven and produce our “coin” of salvation for entry into eternity if one side is present, but the other is not, the coin will be rejected as a counterfeit. One side only works with the other. Yeshua, when teaching His disciples to pray during the Sermon on the Mount, told them to pray, “Forgive us our debts as we forgive our debtors.” (Matthew 6:14). He went on to say in Matthew 9: 12, 14, “For if you forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. But if you do not forgive men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive yours.”

Not forgiving others, including our brothers and sisters, is more significant than many of us may understand. Our Father wants us to pardon the wrong things others have done to us so that He can forgive the wrongs we have done against Him. However, we will not be forgiven of our wrongs if we will not forgive others of theirs. Once again, if we have not forgiven everything done against us, none of our sins are forgiven. Yeshua is clear in His wording. A lack of forgiveness hinders our healing, deliverance, and triumph. We have difficulty moving forward and are stuck in our present situations because we have not forgiven others.

Say this aloud with me:

My forgiveness is serious business. If I do not forgive the harm people have done to me, my Father will not forgive my sins against Him and others. If I don’t forgive them, He won’t forgive me. If I don’t release them, He won’t release me. So, for me to walk in triumph; for me to be healed; for me to get a breakthrough; for me to get delivered; and for me to grow to maturity, I must be forgiven. But, for me to be forgiven, I must first forgive. As Yeshua has forgiven me, I will forgive others. And as I forgive others, my Father and my King will forgive me.

We should continue to say this until Father makes it alive in our hearts and releases us to move forward. 

Read Matthew 18: 21-35; Luke 6: 37-42; John 20: 21-23, and Romans 12: 14-21.


Dear Heavenly Father,

Thank you for the gift of your Son, Yeshua, who died so that I may live. He never sinned, yet He died for those who sin regularly. He took my sin so that I could be forgiven. 

Abba, forgiveness and compassion are part of Your nature. You are compassionate, gracious, slow to anger, and abound in love and faithfulness.  You forgive sin to a thousand generations.  I lift my hands and praise You for Your goodness, mercy, and love. I praise Your name for the incredible gift of Your forgiveness toward me through Your Son, Yeshua ha Mashiach (Jesus, the Messiah). HalleluYah.  I am forgiven, for you have forgiven me.  I am released of what I owe because You have liberated me.

Father, I pray that Your Holy Breath will grant me repentance.  I pray that He would create the desire and power in me to forgive others as You have forgiven me. Write these Words in my heart and mind that I will not sin against You. 

So, since You have forgiven me, I will forgive those who have intentionally and unintentionally sinned against or harmed me. You require that I release them of what they owe me.  I call them by their name.  Abba, I forgive . . . I release them. I let them go.  I give You my right for vengeance.  I will not hold it against them.  I bow down and put my feelings toward them on Your altar. I cast my concern for justice and vengeance toward You because You care about me. Like Yeshua prayed for His enemies while He was on the cross, I pray for those who have harmed me, “Forgive them Father for they don’t know what they are doing.” Release them from their sin and let them go.

Forgive me for not forgiving them. Wash away the stain of sin and unforgiveness from my life with the blood Yeshua shed for me. Cleanse me of all wickedness and sin.  Create in me a heart and mind that forgives.  I have forgiven them; please forgive me.

Thank you, my King, for hearing my prayer.

I pray all these things in the name of Yeshua ha Mashiach. (Jesus, the Messiah). Amen!


The Passage of Time: God vs. Man: Part I

Measuring Time according to Psalm 90:4

Scripture tells us that the way our Father does things is not the way we do things, nor does He think the way we do (Isaiah 55: 8-9).  This principle is apparent when we look at Psalm 90, the only psalm written by Moses. This whole psalm is insightful and is well worth our time to read again and again having a depth of insight into the mind and ways of our Father. Specifically in verses 3-6, Moses was discussing the speed at which a person’s lifetime passes before the Creator of mankind versus how it passes to mankind themselves. He said to the Father:   

3You return man to dust, saying, “Return, O sons of mortals.”

4 For in Your sight a thousand years are but a day that passes,  

or a watch of the night.

5 You whisk them away in their sleep; they are like the new grass of the morning—

6 in the morning it springs up new, but by evening it fades and withers.

Within these four verses Moses gave us an equation that has always intrigued me: one day = one thousand years.  He is letting us see how our lives pass by, from our Father’s point of view. In the psalm Moses explains that we are like the new grass that sprouts in the morning only to wither and fade by the evening.  Indeed, from the simple equation Moses gave us, we can calculate the following table:

TABLE: The Passage of Time: God versus Man

To help bring this into perspective, let’s look at it like this:

  • It takes a couple about 9 months to conceive, carry, and birth a child.  This is about 1 minute to Elohim about the time it takes us to pop a bag of popcorn in the microwave.
  • If a child becomes an adult at 21 years, then it takes them about 30 minutes to grow up before the Most High.
  • If on average, human beings have 70 to 80 years of life, then we have a little under 2 hours to live God-time (GT).  That is about the time it takes for us to watch a movie or two episodes of a TV show.
  • The United States of America is about 1.8 days old GT, a little less than a two-day weekend.
  • Israel is about 3000 years old which makes it 3 days old GT, the length of a holiday weekend.
  • China has a recorded history of approximately 5000 years which makes it about as old as a typical five-day work week GT.
  • The continent of Africa, considered to be the cradle of humanity, is, scientists say about 2 billion years old.  That would make it 55.5 centuries old GT.
  • The earth is said to be 4.5 billion years old which makes it 125 centuries old GT.

From Everlasting to Everlasting

While all of this blows my mind as I continue to consider it, these times are minuscule when compared to Elohim Himself. He exists outside of time as we know it; He comes from everlasting and continues to everlasting (Psalm 90:2).

This concept can be a little difficult to fathom so let’s look at it this way:  Consider an extra-long dining table that can seat 20 people.  There are no chairs, so we go stand beside it near the middle of the table. One end of the table represents the beginning of time when our solar system came into being.  The other table end represents the end of time, when the earth will be destroyed by fire (Zephaniah 1: 14-18).  

The Creator of our universe can take in the whole of time from one end of the table to the other all at once, but He is not confined by it like we are.  His existence goes from before the beginning of the table “the beginning of time” and goes past the other end of the table “the end of time.”  His existence keeps on going past both ends of the table forever. He just keeps going “from everlasting” one way “to everlasting” the other way.  Can you picture it?   He exists now.  He always was before time began. He always will be after time ends. May our Father open our eyes so we can see and understand Him for who He is. He has been and will continue to be our dwelling place throughout all generations (Psalm 90:1).

Why is this important for us to understand?  Why did Moses put this in his Psalm of Praise?  There are many reasons I believe, but we are going to look at two.  The first one comes from verse 12 of Psalm 90 where he prayed, “teach us to number our days.” The second comes from the last verse when Moses asks Elohim to “establish the works of our hands.” We will look at the first one today and cover the second one in part II of this article.

Numbering Our Days

From the time of Adam to the time of Noah, human beings had a lifespan of about 1000 years or 1 day GT.  After the flood, their lives were shortened to about 10 hours GT. During our lifetime that time again has been shortened to no more than 3 hours GT. Moses writing Psalm 90, wanted us to make to most of the time we have.  He asked Elohim to help us give a number to each of our days so that “we would have a heart of wisdom.” In essence, he wanted us to have a count down so we would know how much time we have left to accomplish what we were put on earth to do.

If we have been given 80 years and 80 years equals 29,200 days, then we can calculate approximately how many days we have left to fulfill our destiny.  Let’s say someone is 35 years old.  We multiply 35 times 365 days per year, and we get 12,775 days that they have been living so far.  Then we subtract 12,775 days from 29,200 days, and we get approximately 16,426 days left.  If your eyes are starting to glaze over do not worry, I’ve created a matrix that calculates the days for every age from one to 100.  You can find it at the bottom of this article.

We can use the number of days left to “count down” our remaining days as Moses prayed for us to do. And using this wisdom, we can “count the cost” of the things we want to accomplish in life, calculate roughly how long those things will take, and then measure that number against our approximate life timeframe.

These calculations give us an idea of what we need to do to get our plans accomplished before it is too late.  Counting the cost with our time is not about how long we have to live, it is about making the most of the little time Father has given us, however long that may be. Numbering our days is like making a budget to manage how we spend our time.  If we make a budget for our time, we are less likely to waste it or spend it on the worthless things only to run out of time before we accomplish our destiny.

The parable of the talents tells us of a wealthy man who gave his employees money while he went on a journey (Matthew 25: 14-30). Those who managed their money wisely were rewarded. They increased their original investments, were congratulated, and given more for their efforts. Maybe you’ve heard the adage that time is money.  Here it is literally the case.  Our time is part of our currency.  And like we do with our money; we can budget and manage our time to our benefit or to our detriment.  Let us take the time to number our days to establish a wise heart.


Father in Heaven,

Thank you for revealing how time passes in Your kingdom compared to our own.

Open our eyes so we may understand it more clearly and then apply this understanding to our lives.  

Teach us to number our days so that one day when we stand before you, we can present you with a heart of wisdom. Give us the mindset and desire to make the most of every opportunity and use each day wisely.  Place these principles in our hearts and write them in our minds (Hebrews 10:16) so that we through the power of Your Holy Breath will live in a way that pleases You and be living letters that the world can read.   

Forgive us for the times we have wasted and mismanaged the time we have been given here on earth.

Lead us and work through us to establish the work of our hands.  We offer what little time we have to Your will and to the establishing of Your Kingdom.

Use Your mighty hand and strong arm to accomplish through us the good works that You planned in advance for us to do (Ephesians 2:10). We are Your workmanship fearfully and wonderfully made in Your image. You do great things, so through You and with You, we do great things as well. Make the things You do through us endure past our fleeting lives to touch the lives of those who come after us on earth and into eternity to come.

In the name of our King, Your Son, who is at Your right-hand right now interceding for us to come into the fulness of our destiny in you. 

In the name that makes a way through the desert, through the mountains, through the wilderness, and over every hill and valley. 

In the name that we love, cherish, and call on in times of trouble:

Yeshua ha Mashiah (Jesus, the Messiah)


Number Our Days Matrix

A Story and A Prayer for Passover

A Story for Passover

This is a story of the first Passover, but the principles can be applied on any day at any time.  The events described here take place on the day before, the day of, and the day after Passover.

Cherem’s Fate

The young boy Kenaz frantically runs from the outside of the city to his stone block home in Goshen.  “Dad! Mom!  It’s happening!’  He yells.  “Moses said, ‘It’s happening tomorrow night!’  We’re going to have to kill him!” 

“What’s this all about?” Kenaz’s dad looked up from his work wondering.  “Who knows Jeph.” Kenaz’s mother said, shrugging her shoulders.  “He probably found another giant ball of ice from the hailstorm. That last one he found was almost as big as his head!”  “Yep, he could barely lift it.” His father added. She smirked while his father chuckled; they both shook their heads.  Kenaz was always finding something or getting into some kind of trouble. 

A Message from the Elders

The elders of their tribe arrived, calling for a meeting of the heads of the families. “The die has been cast.” They said, “Tomorrow night death will come to every door in Egypt requiring the firstborn of each household to carry out the Almighty’s edict. He will strike down the Egyptians so that they will let our people go worship Elohim on His mountain.”

“Can it be? Really? Unbelievable!” The crowd began to mumble.

As the rumble grew louder, the head elder raised his hand, “We must begin to prepare right away.  Each household must take a young unblemished lamb or goat, slaughter it, and prepare it for the meal. Then, take some of the drained blood from the animal and spread it on the tops and sides of your front door.  Doing this will protect anyone inside from harm. We have Moses’ promise.”

A Plea for a Stay of Execution

As the crowd began to disperse, Kenaz ran up to his parents coddling a young lamb. “See!  See! They want us to kill Cherem!  We can’t! We just can’t!” He exclaimed desperately.  Bending over to stroke his curly black hair, Kenan’s mother picked them both up and put them in her lap, “Oh Ken. It’s going to be alright,” she said tenderly pulling him close.  

“No, it won’t!  It won’t!  We can’t kill him!  He is my friend! I’ll . . . I’ll take him!  I’ll take him and hide!” He began to cry profusely.

Understanding Ken’s pain, Jephunneh walked over to them and gently put his hand on Ken’s back, “What about your bother?” He said to Kenaz slowly.  “What happens when the angel comes for him?”

“Caleb?” Ken said weakly.  “Yes, Caleb,” his father responded softly.  “He is the oldest. Do you want the angel to come and take him?”

Kenaz looked up sheepishly through his tears and slowly shook his head. 

A Different Point of View

“Let me show you something, Ken, Jeph said while slowly picking up Cherem.  Walking over to the orderly pile of uncut rocks nearby, he put the lamb on the ground, bent down, and pointed two fingers at his eyes and then at Cherem, signaling the others to watch.  Cherem ran over to Kenaz and snuggled up to him for a moment, then skipped over to the pile of rocks, jumped on it, and sat down on its side, turning slowly to look up at Jephunneh. 

“See. My son. He knows.” Looking at Kenaz, Jeph continued, “Somehow, he knows he’s trading his life for our family’s. He understands that he was born for this. It is a gift the Mighty One gives those who will give their lives for others. They know when their time is at hand, and they have the courage and the compassion to face it.”

His mother continued, “Putting his blood on our door and making his body a part of our final meal here in Egypt, joins us to the rest of the family of Elohim who will be doing the same thing. His body and his blood create a joining between our family, the Almighty, and His people.  His blood protects us from death, and his body joins us in a covenant with the God of Abraham.”

Mighty Wonders Ahead

“Plus, you little rascal,” Caleb said, walking up from leaning on a nearby tree listening to the conversation, “Yahweh, said He would watch over us all night to make sure we leave Egypt safely. He’s not sending some of His angels, He’ll be here Himself!” Throwing Kenaz high up into the air. “You wouldn’t want Him to see us as the only family who didn’t follow His instructions do you?”  Kenaz frantically shook his head and hugged his older brother. 

“Our Elohim, Yahweh is greater and more powerful than anyone ever thought,” Caleb said as he walked over and kissed his mom on the forehead. Then looking over at Jephunneh.  “Hey dad!”

“Son.” His father said proudly, nodding his head and smiling. 

“In the next few days, weeks, and years, Yahweh is going to perform some amazing wonders on our behalf. Those of us who love Him, listen to and act on what He says, and believe in His Name He gave us through Moses, will be in on every event.” Caleb said walking over to the altar Cherem was laying on, “And this little guy’s sacrifice will allow us to see it and participate.  That’s right! We won’t just watch what happens; we’ll be a part of it!”  

Cherem’s Destiny

Cherem seeing Caleb walk over to him, stood and stomped his feet softly and excitedly, and then leaped into his arms.  Caleb deftly caught him and reached into his pocket to give him a small carrot he had picked up for him.  “Thank you, little guy,” He said quietly to Cherem, “for giving your life for me.”  

At this Caleb gently placed Cherem back on the altar.  Looking again at Kenaz, Cherem lay down again, but this time putting his head down in a way that exposed his neck to Caleb.  Kenaz’s mother and father pulled their young son close holding him gently. Caleb picked up the sacrificial knife stored near the altar. “Dad?” he said looking at his father. 

“Go ahead, son,” Jephunneh said.  Cherem closed his eyes . . . and so did Kenaz.

A Dark Cloud of Smoke

As the sunset of the next day approached, a large dark ball of smoke appeared in the sky that looked different than any of the clouds.  “What’s that!” Kenaz exclaimed.  Jephunneh and Caleb looked at the sky and then glanced at each other quickening their pace. 

“Ken.” Jephunneh said, “Run inside and let your mother know we’ll be there in just a minute so we can start eating dinner.”  Looking at the sky warily, Kenaz nodded his head quickly, and ran to the house, yelling, “Mom! Dad said . . .” “I could have yelled, Ken!” Jeph said interrupting and smirking.  But his joviality was stopped short . . . the smoke grew larger, broke apart into individual puffs of smoke, and began to spread out over Egypt.  Caleb looked at his father, “We should get inside.”

Death at the Door

Jephunneh, Caleb, and the older children watched at the door.  Part of the dark smoke came right down onto their street and changed into a large dark menacing angel with huge dark wings and a long black sword. After the angel landed on the ground, he paused for a moment moving his head from side to side as if looking for something. He then stopped short looking off in the distance, then quickly turned his gaze directly at Zeph, Caleb, and the kids. The children opened their eyes wide, gasped, ran back to the table, and sat down abruptly.  The two men looked calmly at each other, slowly closed the door, and went to the table to begin their meal.  Caleb looked around the table at his family who was clearly shaken up and said, “We have no need to fear. We have Moses’ word. We have Yahweh’s promise. We’ve been obedient; now we only need to believe, and we will see our Elohim’s deliverance.” He paused again and said, “This is the tenth plague; the last one. Tomorrow . . . we will be free.”

Banging, Running, Screaming,

While the family ate the Passover meal and discussed the events that had led up to this night, the atmosphere outside turned dark. They heard heavy footsteps outside in the street, footsteps that shook the ground as they landed.  They lived in an area that housed slaves from other nations as well as Yisraelites (Israelites).  Some had followed the Yisraelites and put blood on their doors, but many had not.  Their next-door neighbors hadn’t. Jephunneh had offered to share their lamb, but the neighbors refused out of fear of what the Egyptians would think. The family paused when they heard deep footsteps walking up to their neighbor’s front door.  There was an eerie silence that could be felt. Four slow bangs could be heard on their neighbor’s door that shook the surrounding houses, but there was no answer. The fifth bang blew the door open.  The family then heard their neighbors running and screaming. Then came a loud ominous, “Nooooooo!” And then, silence.  They had two first-born in their family, the mother and the oldest son.

A Whisper and A Song

The footsteps started again; this time they were heading toward their door.  The footsteps slowly boomed closer and stopped at the family’s front door.  Jephunneh and Caleb both stood up at the same time bracing for an encounter with Death. Then there was silence again; everyone was watching the front door and listening intently.  But next, they all heard a low and slow whisper, ‘Pesach.’ And then silence again. Suddenly, the footsteps began again moving away from their door. 

Jephunneh and his wife looked at each other. All the children whispered to one another, “What was that? Did you hear it? I don’t know what that was.”

Caleb looked up with tears in his eyes, “It was Cherem’s blood.  It spoke to Death and told it to pass by us.”

Caleb’s mother added, “The way Abel’s blood spoke to Elohim after Cain killed him.” Caleb nodded his head slowly.

The blood worked; they had been delivered. The family embraced one another full of gratefulness and love for each other and their Deliverer.

Another loud bang on a door, however, startled them out of their embrace. They began to hear more running and screaming, and then silence.  That was the cycle of death that night: footsteps, banging, running, screaming, silence.  Jephunneh walked over to the open area of the home and said, Let’s have a song; shall we?  He started and the family joined in with him in harmony:

YAHWEH is our light and our salvation—whom shall we fear?

YAHWEH is the stronghold of our lives—whom shall we dread?

When the wicked came upon us to devour our flesh, our enemies and foes stumbled and fell.

Though an army encamps around us, our hearts will not fear;

Though a war breaks out against us, we will keep our trust.

We will not fear the terror of the night, nor the arrow that flies by day,

Nor the pestilence that stalks in the darkness, nor the calamity that destroys at noon.

Though a thousand may fall at our side, and ten thousand at our right hand, no harm will come near us.

We will only see it with our eyes and witness the punishment of the wicked.

The Vigil

The next morning when the family woke up, they hurried to the windows and the door.  All the houses that didn’t have lambs’ blood on them now had the blood of that family’s firstborn on or around them.  All their front doors were either ajar or broken down.  None of the houses that had lamb’s or goat’s blood on them had been touched, however.  It was also very cloudy over the whole area.  All at once, a ram’s horn blew two short blasts. “That’s it!” Said Caleb.  “That’s the signal. It’s time to go!”

As the family was finishing securing their belongings for travel, Kenaz, looking toward the sky said, “Why do the clouds look so close to us? It looks like I can jump up and touch them.” Taking a step, he brought his feet together and jumped in the air as high as he could.  His mother continued, “What’s really odd is that usually with cloud cover, the area becomes darker, but these clouds seem to be making the sky bright as a sunny day.” Jephunneh and Caleb had been packing and hadn’t noticed so they stopped in unison to look at the sky. Caleb’s face morphed with realization, then brightened, “It’s Yahweh!!  He’s watching over His promise to us, to make sure it’s carried out like He said He would!!! He’s keeping vigil over us until we’ve made it out safely!”  With that, he took a step and jumped in the air just like Kenaz yet going much higher, but he seemed to float in slow-motion. A portion of the cloud broke off from the rest and encircled him momentarily, and then went back up.  Everyone nearby who heard the conversation looked up in amazement and began telling others until most of Yisrael was looking up to the clouds in awe and wonder. They understood at least momentarily that Yahweh had been faithful to them.  He had kept His word. The last plague had accomplished its purpose.  Elohim’s death angel had passed over them but had soundly punished the Egyptians. They were being set free from their cruel bondage to slavery in Egypt.


This story is an interpretation of the first Passover which has many different meanings and blessings for which to be thankful. The two I would like to focus on here are the sacrificial lamb, (Cherem), and Father’s vigil over His children to make sure they were set free from bondage and made it safely out of Egypt.  Cherem is pronounced “Kher-rem” and is defined as something devoted to destruction or sacrifice.

The Father’s Love for His Children

While the Father loved and watched over the Children of Yisrael (Israel), for them to benefit from that love during the final plague, they had to be obedient and follow the instructions He gave through Moses. They had to distinguish themselves from the Egyptians by putting the blood of a slaughtered lamb or goat on the posts of their front door. The Egyptians lived very differently than Yisrael.  They did not have the instructions from Elohim to follow nor did they have His promise of deliverance.  Had Yisrael followed the Egyptian’s way of living they would have stayed in bondage and ended up in destruction along with them. 

Elohim’s love for His children is only as effective as their trust in Him and His abilities, and their obedience to His instructions. If any of Yisrael had not listened to what Elohim wanted, and instead had followed Egypt’s example, their firstborn would have perished along with Egypt’s. The Father of our Souls has definitively shown His love for us by sacrificing His first-born Son. We must, however, accept His love by believing in His Son, and accepting His death and blood as a part of our lives like Yisrael did. So, if the death angel comes for us prematurely or because of sin, He will see our Savior’s blood on the door of our souls, recognize that a life has already been taken on our behalf, and like what happened to Yisrael in Egypt, He will pass us by.

The Father Watches over His Children

Exodus 12: 42 tells us that the Commander of Heaven’s Armies Himself kept vigil that night and the next day, watching over Yisrael to make sure they made it out of Egypt safely and completely.  He did not send His massive army of angels, He did it Himself. He waited there in Egypt with them overnight and the next day until the last sandaled foot left the city of Ramses.  Let us consider that for a second.  He came down as the Great Shepherd we read about in Psalm 23 to herd His shackled, broken, lost sheep into a place of freedom, health, and safety. The King of the known and unknown universe put aside His majestic crown and scepter, bent down to pick up a rod and staff, and lovingly brought comfort and deliverance to His people.  What a wonderful picture of His nature and character that is!

Furthermore, scripture tells us that our Father does not change or vacillate (Numbers 23:19, Hebrews 13:8, James 1:17). We can find comfort and hope if we remember that when our critical moment of deliverance from bondage is at hand, if we will trust Him and listen to what He wants us to do, He will be faithful to stand vigil over us until we have been delivered from our captivities as well. He will walk with us and guide us into our promised land slaying giants and defeating enemies along the way.

A Possible Passover Paradigm Shift

It’s also interesting that as a part of the ongoing Passover celebrations, Elohim instructs His people to also hold vigil with Him (Exodus 12: 42). But if Yisrael had already been delivered from slavery, why did they still need to watch and pray during Passover? As many of us may know, while Yisrael was set free from their slavery to Egypt, mankind was still very much in bondage to sin and spiritual wickedness. They needed their own “Cherem” to die for them so that Death would pass them by.  They needed a Mighty One to work wonders on their behalf and deliver them out of their bondage to slavery. Praise Father for our precious unblemished Lamb, Deliverer, and King, our “Cherem”, Yeshua ha Mashiah (Jesus, the Messiah)!

Standing Vigil on Passover

The Passover is a perfect time for us to stand vigil with our Father for ourselves so that we can be delivered from any persistent proclivities that we can’t seem to shake. Especially since He, the Creator of the Universe scheduled this appointment to meet with His people for the purpose of natural and supernatural deliverance. Yeshua became our “Cherem” to pay the price for our sins and take the place of our punishment and death due to our sins.  He also sent His Holy Breath (Holy Spirit) to walk with us and lead us into continued victory and supernatural freedom.  As the Children of Yisrael had to defeat all the enemies who were residing in the land Father gave them before they could enter their promised land, so must we. As they would come face to face with their enemies and giants, they would bow down and seek the Commander-in-Chief for the strategy for victory. This is a perfect time for us to consecrate ourselves, cry out, and seek Him for victory in our lives. If we’ve been wanting new levels of freedom in our lives, this is a great time to seek Him for it.

If we don’t want to stand vigil for ourselves, we may consider doing it for someone else. This is the nature of the feast. Father stood vigil to see the Children of Yisrael (Israel) delivered from Egypt.  And now we can stand vigil with Him for each other so that we can be set free from the issues that we struggle with or have us bound, together.  One of my favorite things about the story of Job is what he would do when his children would have parties. Job would go to pray and make sacrifices for them just in case they sinned. (Job 1: 4-5) We can also pray for those in the world who are destined and called according to the promise but have not yet placed the blood of Yeshua on their souls. We pray that they will choose life and come out of their bondage to sin and Satan before the death angel comes for them.

A Thought for This Passover

This Passover let us take some time to celebrate what our Father did in Egypt for Yisrael.  Let’s thank Him for what Yeshua did for us by laying down his life as a “Cherem” for the world. Elohim set up this date as a special time for His people to meet with Him, not just for a ritualistic ceremony, but to meet with and interact with His people, those who love Him and call on His Name.  Like in Egypt so many years ago, He’s holding vigil over us to see that we make it to freedom.  Perhaps we are dealing with personal struggles from which we need to be released.  Perhaps we are having trouble in school or work or in our finances.  Perhaps we are fearful of a certain outcome in our lives.  Maybe we are having marital problems or health issues. Maybe we have animosity or unforgiveness in our families. Whatever the issue, this is a time for us to come squarely before the Most High, our People Delivering, Promise Keeping, Prayer Answering, Freedom providing, Family Restoring, Body Healing, never changing Heavenly Father for help and freedom. After our Seder, perhaps we can bow before Him in reverence, and cry out for deliverance for ourselves and others while He is watching and holding vigil specifically for that like He said He would. 

A Prayer for Passover:

Let us pray this prayer together on Passover.  It is meant to be prayed aloud and with conviction.  Take your time and if you need to pray something more than once or add your own words, feel free to do so until the Holy Breath releases you to move forward. Continue to press in until you have everything you need. May Father meet us at our point of need and bring us together into total freedom and deliverance in Him.

Dear Faithful Father,

Thank you for what you did in Egypt for the Children of Yisrael!  Thank you for showing Yourself strong with the wonders and miracles You performed.  There is no One like You!  You sent plagues on the Egyptians, but You kept those plagues from harming Your people. You delivered them with a Strong Arm and a Mighty Hand. Your Power is unmatched. You led them through the desert, and when Pharoah’s army trapped them, You opened up the Red Sea!  While in the wilderness, You fed Your people with manna and gave them water from a rock!  Most of all Father, You gave them Your Word to teach them how to live and how to please You. Thank you for Your goodness to Your people and to us!

Thank you for Your Son, Yeshua who gave His life in exchange for ours.  We believe and are thankful that He not only died but was buried, rose again, and is seated at Your right-hand making intercession for us right now.  Since You have forgiven us, we forgive everyone who has hurt or wronged us in any way.  We release them to receive Your forgiveness so that we will in turn be released to receive Your forgiveness. Forgive us for all our sins known and unknown, individual and habitual.  We confess the sins that You bring to our minds right now. Selah. We do not judge others since that will bring Your judgment on us. Wash us with Your Blood so that the death that comes because of sin, will pass by us. We are Your children, and You have first place in our lives.  You are our King, and Your Kingdom is our priority!  There are none before You or even beside You in our lives!!  Thank you for saving us! 

Now Father, when Yeshua’s disciples asked Him to teach them to pray, He responded by teaching the principles of the prayer in Matthew 6: 5-15. While we will not recount them all here, we will focus on the tenth one: Deliver us from evil or the evil one.

We raise our hands to You and ask that you deliver us, deliver our friends and families, deliver Your people, and deliver those who don’t know you. 

Deliver us from all evil and the evil one.

Deliver us from principalities, from evil authorities, from the world rulers of the darkness of this age, and from spiritual wickedness in the heavenly realms.  

Deliver us from anyone or anything that might come into our lives to hinder or harm us in any way.

Deliver us from bondages, proclivities, and addictions that have control over us at times and are leading us down a path you do not like.

Deliver us from any sickness, disease, or health problems in our lives.  

Deliver us from anything not mentioned here that we may need freedom or protection from.

Show us the path to righteousness, wholeness, and freedom. 

We thank you, Father, for hearing our prayer, and setting the appointed day Passover to meet with us, to celebrate the great things You’ve done, and to seek You for the mighty wonders You have yet to do. We anticipate Your goodness, Your Mercy, and Your power. 

We pray all these things in the name of Your Son, our Deliverer, Yeshua ha Mashiah (Jesus, the Messiah).


The Parable of the Contented Hoarders

The Parable of the Contented Hoarders

A man, a woman and their family lived on a lush, beautiful plot of land.  The land had everything anyone ever needed to live well. Anything that was not available, the land yielded enough produce to trade for whatever else was needed. The people who lived there were happy and content.

Rumors of Impending Dangers

One day rumors began to spread throughout the kingdom of impending dangers on the horizon. The leaders of the land along with many of the community leaders advised the citizens of the kingdom to begin to create stores of food, water, and to stock up on long-term survival supplies. So, the man, the woman and their family did what was advised; they began to store half of food produced on their land along with all their other supplies until he, his wife and their family had enough to survive for over a year without outside help. And again, the man, the woman and their family were happy and content.

The Discontented Movers

There were many in the kingdom, however, who did not have the means to store and hoard supplies as they were barely surviving, living day to day and week to week. Others, who had more severe struggles, found it difficult to maintain even a place to stay.  They had to move about the kingdom from place to place.  They didn’t have the means to trade for the food they needed to store so they learned to live off the land. They found that the land in the kingdom was a gracious host that provided all the food they needed. Also, many of the supplies they needed could be built from wood, stone, and metals found on the land. Whenever the land did not have or ran out of things they needed to survive, they would just move to another place in the kingdom that did.

Danger from the South

One day a message came from the leaders of the kingdom that danger could be coming from another kingdom across their southern border.  They sent word to all the builders of the kingdom to come to the southern border and help build a barrier to keep the danger from coming up and harming its citizens. Those who had large stores were content with the decision, but those who lived off the land knew that during the cold and wintery season of the year the southern kingdom was the only place that provided food and a warm place to survive.   The discontented movers also knew that the residents and leaders of the southern kingdom had no desire to hurt or bring any kind of harm to their kingdom. They had welcomed them and helped them survive even though many were just like them, working and struggling to survive. However, no one in the kingdom would listen to them.  But the man, the woman and their family helped build the barrier, returned home, and were happy and content.

Attack from the North

One night while the citizens of the kingdom were asleep, a large fire-breathing serpent attacked the kingdom unawares. When the sentinels sounded the alarm, everyone looked to the south for the attack, but lo and behold, the serpent and its army attacked from the north and east! Joining the assault was its comrade the grand grizzly and its army attacking from the far north and the west.  No one had any idea that their good neighbors to the north had conspired with the serpent and the grizzly.  The leaders of the kingdom mistakenly thought that while there were hints of a possible “encounter” with the serpent’s army, they thought that it would come from afar to destroy their land. Little did they know that the serpent and its allies wanted their land for themselves. So, there was war in their kingdom for the first time in many, many wars.

The Kingdom Responds

The kingdom sent in their large, powerful, predatory bird, the symbol of their kingdom, and its army to fight against the forces of their enemies on their own soil. The combat was so grueling and vicious that the land was covered in violence. Those who had no stable place to stay and others who thought it prudent went south past the barrier wall where there was food and safety, since the people of that land were not at war with their kingdom, the serpent’s, or the grizzly’s.  Those who had their hoards and supplies stayed in place, hunkered down while the war was raging around them. Many of them lost their homes, their stores, and their lives to the warriors of the serpent and the grizzly. Those who finally realized that it wasn’t safe to stay put, packed their goods and wares, and set off to the south. For most of them, however, it was too late. The grizzly’s forces had already begun to move to the south to flank the mighty bird’s forces and cut off any escape from the citizens. Some who tried to fight back were maimed or killed. Others were caught, imprisoned, and had their goods confiscated. This was the fate of the man, woman, and their family. They were caught, separated, and imprisoned while the children were corralled with other kids, and sent to a faraway land for . . . processing. Only a very few who stayed in their homes made it to safety.  The kingdom’s leaders had unwisely advised them to hoard and hunker down when they should have also told them to prepare for escape.


Not all timeless, sage wisdom is appropriate for the current time.


2 Chronicles 20: 2; Revelation 3: 1-6


To my family and friends in Yeshua (Jesus):

Not everything that sounds like wisdom is applicable for the current situation.  And not everyone who says they are hearing from Father is. It is important for us to be attentive and listen for what the Holy Breath (Spirit) is currently saying to those who hear His Voice and like sheep following the Shepherd, act on what He tells us.  We should position ourselves to hear Him for ourselves. There are many voices in the world and in the IoT (internet of things) ecosystem. Let us follow His Voice and not another’s (John 10: 27 – 30). Let us make certain we are listening to the only One who actually knows what is about to happen.

We need not fear; however, Father protects those who love, follow, and believe on His Son Yeshua. Remember the story of the first Passover in Egypt? The whole land and all its inhabitants were about to experience the power of the angel of death who was coming to take the first born of the land. Father told those who were listening, willing and obedient, how to survive the death angel’s assignment before it happened. Those who recognized His Voice through Moses and were obedient, survived.  However, those who followed what the Egyptians were saying lost their first born to the angel. 

My brothers and sisters, this is not the time to be unaware of the current climate of our nation or the world.  It is not the time to be unaware of the plan of Elohim on earth today.  The world stage is changing quickly and dramatically.  Are we ready for what is coming next?  Are we sure? There are nation influencing, world changing events happening presently and on the horizon.  It is my desire to hear the directions of Father from the Holy Breath Himself.  Anyone one else with me?  This is a time for us to watch and pray, then listen and obey to access the promises to be rescued from the coming onslaught (Psalm 91: 14 -16). We cannot just listen to what everyone is saying around us; we should find out what Father is saying to us for ourselves. 


Our Father,

We are living in the dark and dangerous times spoken of in scripture long ago.  Before our eyes we are seeing age-old prophesies coming true with hints of more coming on the horizon.  This, however, does not surprise or worry You.  “For You declare the end, from the beginning, and ancient times from what is still to come. Your purpose will stand and all Your good pleasure You will accomplish.”  (Isaiah 46:10) So Father, we thank You that not only are You aware of what’s going on, but You also know what’s about to happen, and You have a plan for it! You put plans in place to counter and remedy the present chaos on earth long ago, and You did so with us in mind. You created us to be a part of Your purpose, Your good pleasure here on earth in the last days!!  Indeed, we were made for such a time as this.  Is there any other god like Yahweh?  There is none other like You Father!!

With these things in mind considering who You are, and what You’ve done for us through Your obedient Son, Yeshua HaMashiach (Jesus the Messiah), we cry out to You: Open our eyes, that we may see what You are doing on earth today, and in Your living body within the Kingdom of Elohim (God).  Open our ears, that we may hear what Your Holy Breath is saying to the churches.  Give us understanding and discerning hearts that can perceive Your plans through all the noise of the day and distinguish Your voice from all the other voices that may sound like Yours but are not.  We submit our wills to the power of Your grace. Work in us to want to do, and then empower us to act on and accomplish Your good purpose.  (Philippians 2: 13

Finally, Father, we forgive those who have harmed us in any way.  We understand that not only did You command us to love our neighbor, but You also require us to love our enemies.  (Matthew 5: 43-48) We also understand that if we do not forgive those who’ve sinned against us, You will not forgive our sins which will hinder us from hearing from You because of unforgiven sin in our lives.  Show us the things in our lives that are weighing us down and keeping us from fulfilling the purpose You have for us.  Give us grace to lay aside the thoughts, words and behaviors that are impeding our progress.  Reveal to us what is keeping us from perceiving Your Voice. We want to know what the next steps in Your plans are so we may be apart.

So, like David said,

                Search me, Oh Elohim, and know my heart,

                Test me and know my thoughts,

                And see if there be any offensive way in me.

                And lead me in the way everlasting. 

                (Psalm 139: 9-10)

We pray for all these things in the name of Your Son, Yeshua HaMashiach!